The HOTSPOT News Analysis

The HOTSPOT News Analysis

Operation Clean Art

  • Operation Clean Art was the first pan India operation to crack down on the smuggling of mongoose hair in the country. There are six species of mongoose found in India and the mostly recovered [in the raids] are grey mongoose [hair].
  • Operation Clean Art was conceived by WCCB with the singular aim of ensuring that the mongoose hair brush trade be closed down across the country.
  • The mongoose is listed in Schedule II Part 2 of the Wildlife Protection Act and any smuggling or possession of its body part is a non-bailable offence.

Wildlife Crime Control Bureau

  • WCCB is statutory multi-disciplinary body under the Union Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC) to combat organised wildlife crime in the country.
  • It was established in June 2007 by amending the Wildlife (Protection) Act (WLPA), 1972, a special Act to protect the wildlife and fauna in the country.
  • It is headquartered in New Delhi and has five regional offices at Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai and Jabalpur.

Wildlife Protection Act 1972

  • There are six schedules which give varying degrees of protection.
  • Out of the six schedules , Schedule I and part II of Schedule II provide absolute protection. and offences under these are prescribed the highest penalties.
  • The penalties for Schedule III and Schedule IV are less and these animals are protected.
  • The penalties for Schedule III and Schedule IV are less and these animals are protected.
  • Schedule V includes the animals which may be hunted. These are Common crow , Fruit bats, Mice & Rats only.
  • Schedule VI contains the plants, which are prohibited from cultivation and planting.

Why in news: In first pan-India operation, raids carried out in U.P, Rajasthan, Maharashtra and Kerala, 49 arrests made and 27 cases registered under operation Clean Art.

Relevance: Prelims- Current events of National Importance, Mains- GS3 Environmental conservation



Goods and Service Tax

  • It is a destination-based taxation system.
  • It has been established by the 101st Constitutional Amendment Act.
  • It is an indirect tax for the whole country on the lines of “One Nation One Tax” to make India a unified market.
  • It is a single tax on supply of Goods and Services in its entire product cycle or life cycle i.e. from manufacturer to the consumer.
  • It is calculated only in the “Value addition” at any stage of a goods or services.
  • The final consumer will pay only his part of the tax and not the entire supply chain which was the case earlier.
  • There is a provision of GST Council to decide upon any matter related to GST whose chairman in the finance minister of India.

GST Council

  • It is the 1st Federal Institution of India, as per the Finance minister.
  • It will approve all decision related to taxation in the country.
  • It consists of Centre, 29 states, Delhi and Puducherry.
  • Centre has 1/3rd voting rights and states have 2/3rd voting rights.
  • Decisions are taken after a majority in the council.

What taxes at center and state level are incorporated into the GST?

At the State Level

  • State Value Added Tax/Sales Tax
  • Entertainment Tax (Other than the tax levied by the local bodies)
  • Octroi and Entry Tax
  • Purchase Tax
  • Luxury Tax
  • Taxes on lottery, betting, and gambling
  • At the Central level
  • Central Excise Duty
  • Additional Excise Duty
  • Service Tax
  • Additional Customs Duty (Countervailing Duty)
  • Special Additional Duty of Customs

At the Central level

  • Central Excise Duty
  • Additional Excise Duty
  • Service Tax
  • Additional Customs Duty (Countervailing Duty)
  • Special Additional Duty of Customs

Why in news: The Goods and Services Tax (GST) revenue in November came in at ₹1,03,492 crore, crossing the ₹1 lakh crore mark once again, having dipped below it for three successive months. Average collections in the financial year 2019-20 so far stand at ₹1,00,646 crore. The collections in November 2019 are the third highest since the GST was introduced, next only to April, 2019 and March, 2019.

Relevance: Prelims- Current events of National Importance, Economics, Mains – Economic Development



Taj Mahal

  • Sheer poetry in marble. Majesty and magnificence, unrivalled, the Taj Mahal is the only one of its kind across the world. The monumental labour of love of a great ruler for his beloved queen( Mumtaz). The ultimate realisation of Emperor Shahjahan's dream. One of the wonders of the world. From 1631 A.D., it took 22 years in its making. An estimated 20,000 people worked to complete the enchanting mausoleum, on the banks of the Yamuna.

Why in news: The revenue earned from the Taj Mahal in Agra went up around four times over five years ending in 2018-2019, according to data given by the Union Ministry of Culture to the Lok Sabha in the ongoing session of Parliament.

Relevance: Prelims- Art and culture 



National action plan on Antimicrobial Resistance

Antimicrobial resistance, including antibiotic resistance, is a global public health threat, as antibiotics and antimicrobials are becoming increasingly ineffective to treat common diseases

The National Action Plan on anti-microbial resistance (AMR) 2017 focuses on six strategic priority areas

  1. Awareness and understanding through education, communication and training
  2. Strengthening knowledge and evidence through surveillance
  3. Infection prevention and control
  4. Optimised antimicrobial use in health, animals and food
  5. AMR-related research and innovation
  6. Strengthened leadership and commitment at international, national and sub-national levels

Highlights of the plan on animal and environmental aspects include the following:

Education and training

  • Revision of curriculum for professionals in food animal, agriculture and environment sector with focus on AMR
  • Development of capacity through appropriate training on issues related to AMR among professionals in animal health, food industry, agriculture and environment


  • Conducting national-level surveillance of antimicrobial resistance in animals, food and environment
  • Conducting national-level surveillance of antimicrobial use (AMU) in animals, agriculture and food sectors
  • Conducting national-level surveillance of antibiotic residues in food from animals and in environment, including waste from farms, factories making animal feed, processing meat, dairy, fish, veterinary and human health care settings, pharmaceutical industry

Infection prevention and control

  • Establishment of infection prevention and control programmes in veterinary settings and animal husbandry
  • Increased awareness, capacity building, training on bio-safety, bio-security, hygiene, good production practices, infection prevention and control among relevant stakeholders

Responsible and optimised antibiotic use

  • Restricting and phase-out of non-therapeutic use of antibiotics in food animals such as their use as growth promoter and in disease prevention
  • Restricting antibiotics in animal feed, feed premix and regulating their import, direct distribution and online marketing
  • Eliminating use of critically-important antimicrobials for humans in food animals
  • Regulating availability of antibiotics in bulk and those sold online including in feed and feed premix
  • Ensuring prescription sale of antibiotics and appropriate labelling of food from animals produced with or without routine use of antibiotics
  • Development of an freshwater/inland fisheries policy
  • Introducing programmes to support small and mid-size farmers to help them reduce use of antibiotics, avoid non-therapeutic use and move to safer alternatives; issue “pond health cards”; help them install necessary systems and infrastructure to prevent infection, support bio-security and waste management.

Focus on environment

  • Reduction of environmental contamination with resistant pathogens and antimicrobial residues through strengthening of necessary laws and regulations, environment risk assessment; extended producer responsibility for expired/unused antibiotics

Relevance: GS 2 – Issues relating to Health



Who is a farmer?

According to the National Policy for Farmers drafted by the National Commission of Farmers headed by M.S. Swaminathan and officially approved by the Centre in 2007

The term ‘FARMER’ will refer to a person actively engaged in

  • The economic and/or livelihood activity of growing crops and producing other primary agricultural commodities
  • All agricultural operational holders, cultivators, agricultural labourers, sharecroppers, tenants, poultry and livestock rearers, fishers, beekeepers, gardeners, pastoralists, non-corporate planters and planting labourers
  • Persons engaged in various farming related occupations such as sericulture, vermiculture and agro-forestry.
  • Tribal families / persons engaged in shifting cultivation and in the collection, use and sale of minor and non-timber forest produce.

Why in news: Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar failed to answer that question when it was asked in Parliament last week

Relevance: GS 3 - Agriculture



Exercise Mitra Shakti –VII

  • Armies of both India and Sri Lanka
  • Aimed at enhancing interoperability and operational efficiency
  • The objective of the exercise is to build and promote positive relations between armies of India and Sri Lanka through focus on sub unit level training on counter insurgency and counter terrorism operations in urban and rural environment under United Nations mandate.
  • The joint training exercise also signifies the strength of India-Sri Lanka relations in the field of military cooperation and engagement, which is vital for refining the interoperability and operational preparedness.

Relevance: Prelims – Current events of national Importance


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